What To Do After a Truck Accident – 10 Essential Next Steps

When you’ve been involved in a crash with a semi-truck, bus, or similar, your next steps are vital. You will need to give full medical attention to your truck accident injuries, often while simultaneously pursuing legal action against a trucking company and insurers.

The essential steps for what to do after a truck accident include:

1. Stay At The Crash Scene
2. Call 9-1-1 For Help
3. Check For Injuries If Possible
4. Take Photos, Videos & Audio for Evidence
5. Exchange Information With Other Drivers
6. Don’t Make Any Statements About The Crash
7. Get Your Case Reviewed By a Lawyer
8. Follow Doctor and Medical Orders
9. Report Accident To Police and DMV
10. Keep an Accident Checklist in All Vehicles

What To Do After a Car Accident - Isaacs and Isaacs


1. Stay At The Crash Scene

In some states, leaving the scene of an accident could constitute a hit and run. Remain at the scene until authorities and medical help have arrived. Move the car if needed for safety. But if possible, leave the vehicle in the position where it came to rest after the crash. This will give you the best chance of preserving the evidence of what caused the wreck and the damages and truck accident injuries that resulted from it.


2. Call 9-1-1 For Help

Often these large truck collisions can a mean severe injury from a truck accident and even fatalities. Safety is your very top priority after an accident with an 18-wheeler truck or bus. If you can, call emergency services right away by dialing 9-1-1. In most circumstances, this will also dispatch the police who can help with gathering eyewitness accounts and creating a crash report.


3. Check For Injuries If Possible

These accidents can often involve a semi-truck and several passenger vehicles. Give attention to your own immediate needs, but keep in mind that injuries and damage to other vehicles, or even to pedestrians, could exist, and may require assistance as well.


4. Take Photos, Videos & Audio for Evidence

The crash scene immediately after the accident provides the strongest opportunity to capture the all-important evidence to prove that you were harmed due to someone else’s negligence. It also can show you are in a position to sue someone for wrongdoing.

Take photos of the damage to all vehicles, snapshots of the intersections or significant landmarks, pay attention to skid marks, and any other details that tell the story of what happened. A video may be your best form of evidence available since you provide still images from this footage.

It might be dark and you may not have a pen. Audio recordings or video narration can offer a very helpful and more thorough solution. As soon as possible, record an audio account of everything you remember.

Having this fresh record of the facts can be critical, as details tend to change or can be forgotten with the passage of time. In some cases, truck crash lawsuits can take months and beyond to reach their conclusion. Keep these items safe for your records, and make backups. You may need to refer to them as you move forward with legal action.


5. Exchange Information With Other Drivers

You’ll need this information later, so whenever possible, gather these items from each of the other drivers involved:

  • Name
  • Phone Number
  • Driver’s License Number
  • License Plate Number
  • Insurance Carrier & Name of Agent
  • Insurance Policy Number

6. Don’t Make Any Statements About The Crash

You’ve probably heard the advice, “Whatever you do, don’t say it was your fault.” There’s some wisdom to this. Maybe a witness saw the other driver texting, or a stoplight was not functioning correctly and was marked for repair. Even if you sense that you had some responsibility for what occurred, it’s smart to take some time, ask all the appropriate questions, and to make sure you are in a calm state of mind away from a jarring accident scene. Make a statement from a strong place, not in a moment of survival and vulnerability.


7. Get Your Case Reviewed By a Lawyer

Driver negligence is the single most common reason for a truck accident. The important goal for most clients who have an injury from a truck accident typically involves restoring justice and obtaining the very best settlement or award of money damages you deserve from a lawsuit. Reaching that goal requires a focused strategy.

It’s important to have an experienced truck accident attorney on your side who knows and fights big insurance companies. These companies often pour huge sums of money into protecting their truckers. Going it alone is the equivalent of performing surgery on yourself. Definitely not recommended in dealing with injuries from a serious truck accident where justice and thousands or even millions of dollars may be on the line.

Do not miss the deadline for filing a truck accident lawsuit called the Statute of Limitations.

Here’s one eye-opening audio conversation below about how truck accidents and lawsuits work. Full transcription of audio availabile here.


8. Follow Doctor and Medical Orders

If you are dealing with truck accident injuries, a major goal in all of this is for you and your loved ones to really care for your health. This is important not just for you, but for the defense attorneys on the other side that are watching to make sure you actually attend these appointments and are genuinely injured. Not following the advice of doctors could backfire on your claim of wrongdoing, and might make it look like you’re not really that hurt. Keep records of all medical visits and payments. You very well may need to include these with the evidence for your case.


9. Report Accident To Police and DMV

Every state has different laws on accident reporting requirements. In the state of Kentucky, for example, you must report a crash to the State Police whenever injuries or death is involved or if property damage is $500 or more.


10. Keep an Accident Checklist in All Vehicles

If you’ve already been in collision with a truck, you hold the difficult, but unique perspective of being able to help and warn others who might go through the same thing in the future. A car crash checklist stored in the glove compartment of your each vehicle in your family, should be considered essential for new drivers and experienced drivers who know that it makes sense to always be prepared for the unexpected.

Car Accident Checklist For Glovebox

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